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National, State Long Term Care Leaders Express Concern That FY 2010 Medicare Cuts Undermine, Contradict Intent of Economic Stimulus Law
Date:2/27/2009

U.S. economy every year.

"The watchwords of the long term care sector are quality, jobs and community value, and policy should help promote what we do best for our patients as well as our nation," Yarwood continued. "While we support and commend the Administration's goal of reforming the U.S. health care system, we must not do so in a way that jeopardizes seniors' access to quality nursing home care, and presents a clear and present danger to the U.S. economy and our state and local caregiver jobs base."

With more than 1,200 nursing facilities providing care for nearly 105,000 frail and elderly in the state, California Association of Health Facilities (CAHF) President and CEO James Gomez, expressed alarm that Medicare cuts in the President's budget could turn back the clock on progress long term care providers have made in quality care improvements and services to an ever growing senior population in California.

"While we work in Sacramento to ensure seniors' care and providers' stability are priorities, we are left with the possibility that federal lawmakers could pass illogical and hurtful federal Medicare cuts," Gomez said. "Long term care generates $4.0 billion in tax revenue and provides more than 300,000 jobs across the state, yet we have 15,000 staff vacancies in our skilled nursing care facilities, 5,700 in nursing staff alone. Stable funding policies are integral to quality care, and central to a strong caregiver jobs base."

Lori Porter, Co-founder of the National Association of Health Care Assistants (NAHCA), and a senior spokesperson for the Coalition to Protect Senior Care, based in Joplin, MO, said it is essential that the nation's Governors ensure new state Medicaid funds, disbursed as part of the federal ARRA law, actually go towards meeting poor seniors' care needs, and not diverted to other state spending priorities that have nothing at all to do with eldercare.


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SOURCE American Health Care Association
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